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Inspired by the Google Art Project, which allows you to look at the collections of loads of galleries, I thought it'd be interesting to find out the UKFF's favourite pieces of art. "I don't know much about art but I know what I like..."


Looking at paintings and that, innit mate.


One of my favourites is Wanderer above the sea of fog by Caspar David Friedrich.


I saw it in the gallery in Hamburg when I was there last year, and it being a painting I recognised from studying Wordsworth in uni, I went to have a closer look. I think I must have been standing there about 10 minutes, there was just something about it that connected with me, which is probably what great art is supposed to do.


Visiting the National Gallery last year, I saw Salisbury Cathedral from the meadows by John Constable.


It's impressive in jpeg form, but seeing it in person, the details are unbelievable. It's fantastic.


I've never been a huge Van Gogh fan, but I saw A wheatfield with cypresses on the same visit to the National, and I'm a convert.


Very pretty as a jpeg, but like with the others, there's something about looking at it in person and seeing the actual brushstrokes Van Gogh made that connects with you...


Finally, there's this potrait by William Dobson of Nicolas Lanier, the artist and Sir Charles Cotterell which is one of the ones we have at the stately home I work at.


It's an incredibly eye-catching painting, there's an intangible element in there that makes you stop and look at it... Waldemar Januszczak (art critic from the Sunday Times) has been a couple of times to film it, and he's given talks on its historical significance and the symbolism and that sort of thing. He's really enthusiastic about it - best self-portrait in English history, apparently - and he didn't speak about it in the Brian Sewell way of "commoners should not be allowed to view art because they can't appreciate it properly" - he actually explained things in easy to understand terms and that certainly helped me appreciate it a lot more.



So then, anyone else like art and stuff? Monet or Manet? Experiments with birds in air pumps? Dali and Picasso? Leonardo, Michelangelo, Raphel and Donatello not just ninja turtles to you? Bit of Turner maybe? Let's see some art!


Except Damien Hirst. He's inexcusably shit. Fuck him and the inside out horse he rode in on.

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Good idea for a thread, HG.


I studied Art and Design in College and although I left it behind when I transformed into a geek at Uni by studying Statistics, I've always had an interest in a few artists and still dabble every now and again with a few paintings of my own. I just never thought I'd be discussing it on here!


My three 'favourites', in terms of how much I studied them and ultimately aimed my own work in a similar style, were Henri Matisse, Jackson Pollock and Wassily Kandinsky. I was also curious about Picasso, too, when I first saw how diverse his style was after initially thinking he was just about the mad shapes and that.


I've had a good nosey around the Guggenheim when I've been over to NY, but my favourite gallery is the Art Institute of Chicago. I've spent hours in there each time I've been and I recommend it to anyone who gets the chance.


Anyway, pictures. My favourite Matisse pieces are:


Luxe, Calme, et Volupte'


Like HG has said above and this applies to all of the images to follow, the detail of this piece is absolutely stunning in person.


The Joy of Life


Very different in the approach, but I love how what appears to be a few blocks of colour come together to make a detailed, yet simple image.




Plate IV


One of the things I like most about Kandinsky is the application of geometry within his works. What appears to be unrelated shapes coming together to make a crisp, eye-catching piece.


The Lyre


Completely different to some of his better known work, but still a very much in keeping with his methodical approach to building up an image.




This is the guy who divided most opinion when I was studying. 'It's just a mess of paint, anyone can do that' was a regular attitude towards his more recognised work, however I think there is something very patient and purposeful about his work.


Number 8


I was blown away by the detail of this painting when I first saw it, it's marvellous. Just don't mention the Stone Roses, please.


The Key


Nothing like his better known work and similar to many of Kandinsky's pieces, but in a less structured manner.



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I can't say I'm keen on Pollock. It's not that I think anyone can do it... it's more that I'm not sure anyone should. But I tend to hold the opinion that you look at an artwork once, and it'll either click with you, or it won't. If it doesn't, then it's probably worth moving on to something else. Pollock doesn't do it for me but that's no reason why others shouldn't like him. That first Kandinsky one's good, though.


I like that first Matisse one you posted too, reminds me a bit of Seurat, lots of dots and blots making a bigger picture:




This one is The Seine seen from La Grande Jatte. Don't know which artist came first, but I like the idea that you can look at things like this from different distances and it almost turns into something different the further away / closer you get to it.

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My three favourite artists ever are Kandinsky, Van Gogh and Diego Rivera - all paint in gorgeous, vivid colours, with pure lines and shades. I also love Aztec art - so much so that I've had a yearly membership at the Royal Academy of Art ever since they had the Aztecs exhibition in 2003; was well worth the money, that's for sure - must have gone to that exhibition at least five times. It was also useful for the big Kandinsky exhibition two years later.


For those not familiar with Diego Rivera:




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At last a bit of culture on this forum. I've always been into art and whatnot despite being told i wasn't very good at it in school ie: i couldn't draw and there's only so many times i could get away with using the phrase "all art is subjective" before they said fuck off.

I don't think i could say i have a favourite artist but i am very fond of Henri Rousseau and John Constable to name two.


Anyways here's a few of my favourites:


Surprised!(Or Tiger in a tropical storm) by Henri Rousseau



The Hay Wain by John Constable - I've been lucky enough to have seen this up close in the National Gallery in London



Arnolfini Portrait by Jan van Eyck



Actually on the subject of so called "artists" is it just me who despises Tracy Emin? I don't think she's contributed a single thing of value to the art world and i would happily burn all her so-called work if the chance presented itself.

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The Hay Wain by John Constable - I've been lucky enough to have seen this up close in the National Gallery in London



Actually on the subject of so called "artists" is it just me who despises Tracy Emin? I don't think she's contributed a single thing of value to the art world and i would happily burn all her so-called work if the chance presented itself.


I only discovered Constable quite recently, but he did some tremendous stuff. I don't think I've seen that one before - also love this one, Cenotaph to the memory of Sir Joshua Reynolds. He puts so much detail into everything, but it never feels like he's saying "look how precisely I can paint!" (which is a good thing):



Totally agree on Tracy Emin, by the way. Shite of the highest order. I can't say there are many artists working today I'm keen on at all, but Yinka Shonibare's done some good stuff. This is he:




He did the big ship in a bottle that was on Trafalgar Square (or at least, that was there last time I was in London).

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Nice idea for a thread!




This is called The Hands Resist Him by Bill Stoneham, it's a very eerie, spooky painting. I am just really taken in by the backstory to it, it's also known as the eBay Haunted Painting. Apparently the painting holds a curse and the owner of the gallery it was first displayed in and the critic who reviewed it both died within a year of coming in contact with it. Stoneham later painted a sequel to it called Resistance at the Threshold




This is called The Crying Boy by Bruno Amadio/Giovanni Bragolin. Again it caught my interest due to it's eerie nature and it's spooky backstory. Apparently copies of it used to be found in housefires, many people who had the painting have had their houses burnt down and no firefighter has a copy of it. During 1985 The Sun even organised mass bonfires of the painting. There have been other adaptions of the painting too.


Anyway both paintings may not be as nice to look at as most in here but just the sheer weirdness and spookiness of them is interesting and if you want to read more about them just search their titles in Wikipedia.

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I LOVE this thread! <3


Starting off with Monet, 'Water-lily pond' 1897




Monet is one of my favourite artists. I find his paintings so peaceful and full of tranquillity, and I have always wanted to try and recreate a similar area like the one in 'Water-lily pond' in my own garden. Somewhere I can stand on the bridge and watch some fishies for hours on a summers day. You know, when I win the lottery. Lovely.


Rembrandt, 'Anatomy Lesson of Dr Nicolaes Tulp' 1632




The Wiki entry on this piece.

I like to study, and I also like to watch people teach, passing on their skills and knowledge. I think this one clicks with me even more now because I've been there myself, a student watching an autopsy.


Klimt, 'Death and life' 1911




Klimt <3 I can never decide how to view this, it often depends on my mood. Half of me see's it as the fact that while we are all enjoying our lives, death is always there, the only certain thing that can never change. Then on the other hand, I see it as even though death is inevitable, it is better to ignore it, be happy and enjoy life and just get on with it.


Turner, 'Eruption of Versuvus' 1817




I love this painting because in my opinion it's one of the very few paintings that I think accurately portrays nature's fury.


I'll get back to this, it's far too late.

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Waterhouse - Hylas and the Nymphs


Possibly the first piece of art I bought, sometime back when I was at college, so around 1994. It probably looked a bit odd amongst the Judas Priest and Iron Maiden posters. It's currently laying down on a shelf, looking rather sorry for itself having been faded by years of sunlight.




Dali - Crucifixion.


Unsurprisingly, I'm a big fan of Dali. A true master of surrealism, with meticulous planning and execution in all his works.




Blake - The Aincient of Days


This was hung on my English and Drama teacher's wall in middle school, and I thought it was pretty cool back then. In my memory, the body had the striation and texture of Blake's Nebuchadnezzar.

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Sculptures are art too! More sculptures!


Kookoocachu, that Turner of Vesuvius is absolutely stunning. Love it. My favourite Turner is probably the classic, The Fighting Temeraire tugged to her last Berth to be broken up, 1838.



I think the pathos in it is so well captured. It's an incredibly sad event being depicted, and I can relate to the message of change and 'progress' being inevitable, but not necessarily for the better. The sense of it being almost like a funeral, the nostalgia, the fight that the Temeraire puts up even as it sails for the last time (the fact it has to be dragged to its death by the tugs, which I guess represent the modern), the contrast between the technologically advanced smaller boats and the beautiful but outdated ship... there's just loads I get out of it.


That Rembrandt one reminds me of An Experiment on a Bird in the Air Pump by Joseph Wright 'of Derby'. I love the way that everybody has a different reaction, and that you can look at it for ages and still not spot everything that's going on. It's one of those ones you could happily stand in front of for a really long time and not even notice.



And speaking of Rembrandt, here's Night watch... which I mainly like because of the version done for Terry Pratchett's book of the same name...



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